Acknowledging that there’s essentially “no ‘right’ way to do it,” the McKinley vet says he was blown away when he first read the script for the episode, which is slated to air on Oct. 10.
“There are so many incredibly well written and powerful scenes,” he shares, before singling out one sequence as being particularly moving. “When [the cast] got the script, we were all reading it together and we were like, ‘Did you get to that one scene.’ And when you see it everyone will know what that one scene is.”
McHale says reactions to Finn’s death will be both varied and surprising, noting that some castmembers “are having to play reactions that they obviously would not feel in real-life, and that’s a weird thing to play. Because you want people to know how you actually feel. But [Ryan Murphy & Co. are staying true to] the characters, and that’s the smart thing to do.”
For example. several characters find themselves in a deep state of denial. “Some people aren’t dealing with the loss of Finn, and it’s a difficult thing because in real life none of us were like that,” he explains. “We were all very much dealing with it.”
We’ve talked to sources who have read the script for Glee’s Cory Monteith tribute episode, which is scheduled to begin production today in Los Angeles, and by all accounts, it does not disappoint.
“You will cry from beginning to end,” says one insider.
“I cried as I read it, on every page,” says another.
No spoilers here, but we can tell you that the episode takes place in Lima, Ohio, and centers around the death of Cory’s character Finn Hudson. As promised, it is not revealed how Finn died, but the episode starts off with the news of his death and then moves on to focus on all the characters remembering and mourning him, and celebrating his life.
We are told that Lea Michele (Rachel) does not appear in the episode until the final act. Her presence is limited but incredibly powerful. And yes, she does sing.
We can also tell you that Santana (Naya Rivera) has a great, memorable part in the episode.
And the final song? Get ready to ugly cry.
Glee creator Ryan Murphy previously revealed he felt it best not to include Finn’s cause of death in Cory’s tribute episode.
“At one point, we were going to have his character die after an accidental drug overdose—that was something we had considered,” he said. “But we have decided that we’re not going to have him pass from that.”
“Basically, what we’re doing in the episode is we are not telling you yet, or maybe not at all, how that character died,” Murphy explained. “The idea being, how somebody died is interesting and maybe morbid, but we say very early on in the episode, ‘This episode is about a celebration of that character’s life.’ That might be weird for some people, but it felt really exploitative to do it any other way.”
Murphy previously told E! News he had planned to shoot the Monteith tribute (episode three) and then take a break to regroup and figure out how to move forward with the series. The initial plan for Glee‘s season five was to have Monteith heavily featured, at his own request, so some of the story arcs must be reconfigured.
Glee cast, we are thinking of you.
Jane Lynch tweeted Wednesday that the script was the “most beautiful thing” and thanked series creator Ryan Murphy and executive producers Brad Falchuk and Ian Brennan.
Murphy recently said Finn’s passing would not mirror what happened to Monteith, who died from a toxic mix of drugs and alcohol in July — and that the memorial episode may not definitively say how Finn passes away.
“How somebody died is interesting and maybe morbid, but we say very early on in the episode, ‘This episode is about a celebration of that character’s life.’ That might be weird for some people, but it felt really exploitative to do it any other way,” Murphy said.
“I think [the script] turned out to be a lovely tribute, and it’s a very heartfelt look at how some people grieve. We’re trying to craft an episode that’s not just about us grieving but about a lot of the young fans grieving.”
Ryan added that “the really difficult thing” — filming the episode in question — began the week of Aug. 12.
Per TMZ, which was first to report on the tragedy, the 29-year-old actor suffered a fatal gunshot wound that appeared to be self-inflicted.
ABC News has since confirmed Young’s death.
Production on the back half of Rizzoli’s current season was suspended Monday and possibly will take a short hiatus. A statement from TNT, Warner Bros. TV and Rizzoli & Isles EP Janet Tamaro reads as follows:
Everyone at Rizzoli & Isles is devastated by the news of the passing of Lee Thompson Young. We are beyond heartbroken at the loss of this sweet, gentle, good-hearted, intelligent man. He was truly a member of our family. Lee will be cherished and remembered by all who knew and loved him, both on- and offscreen, for his positive energy, infectious smile and soulful grace. We send our deepest condolences and thoughts to his family, to his friends and, most especially, to his beloved mother.
Young’s TV credits include the title role in Disney Channel’s The Famous Jett Jackson (which ran from 1998 to 2001), Scrubs, FlashForward and Smallville (where he played Cyborg). On Rizzoli, he has costarred as Detective Barry Frost since the TNT series’ pilot.
On the big screen, he played running back Chris Comer in 2004′s Friday Night Lights.
FOX Entertainment Chairman Kevin Reilly revealed today that the death of Cory Monteith‘s character on Glee will be connected with the late actor’s troubled past.
“The third episode will write Finn out of the show. That episode will deal directly with the incidents involved with Cory’s passing and the drug abuse in particular,” he said, though Reilly wouldn’t confirm that Finn would die from drug overdose.
Reilly also announced that Ryan Murphy will shoot PSA’s with the cast that will “speak directly with the audience.” Further, proceeds from the music from the third episode will go directly to starting a fund in Monteith’s name.
The Fox boss confirmed that the show going back to work all started with Lea Michele who he called a “pillar of strength” and “an extraordinary human being.”
And when asked about the future of Glee, Reilly said that he doesn’t see the show continuing past season six.
“I would not anticipate it going beyond two more seasons,” he said “Look, never say never, but there’s two very clear arcs to get to the end and conclude. If we dicover a new crop of kids and there’s some breakout in life, who knows? But right now we’re just thinking about two more seasons.”
Murphy told us recently in an emotional conversation how he wants Monteith to be remembered: as a champion of young artists and the underdog.
“I hope that that’s how he’s remembered and I think he will be because that’s how he was in real life with his causes and his outreach programs,” the Glee creator said. “Also I think a lot of people, a lot of young kids, have watched the evolution of that character and have been touched by it and hopefully that’s his legacy.”
Monteith died at age 31 of a heroin and alcohol overdose on July 13 in a Vancouver hotel room. The cast and crew of Glee met last week on the Fox lot for a private memorial to “share memories and music in an emotional celebration of the life of Cory Monteith.”
If you or someone you know needs help with addiction issues, contact Narcotics Anonymous.
Glee’s Mike O’Malley Honors Cory Monteith as ‘Real-Life Quarterback,’ Plans to Appear in Upcoming Finn Tribute Episode
“He was the fictional quarterback on the show and the real-life quarterback on that set,” the actor told reporters Saturday at the Television Critics Association’s summer press tour in Beverly Hills, where he was promoting his new NBC sitcom Welcome to the Family. “I just loved working with him. I miss him very much.”
O’Malley said the “toughest scene I’ve ever acted” was actually a Glee sequence involving Monteith. “I had to throw [Finn] out of the house because of a slur that he used,” he recalled. “It was remarkable to me when we were shooting that scene the depth of emotion he was able to portray — the sorrow, the shame.”
Regarding Glee‘s upcoming Finn tribute episode, O’Malley said he fully intends to participate and “honor Cory and his passing,” adding, “He is on that show my stepson; I plan in being there. And I think they’ll be shooting that [episode] on a time where [Family] is on hiatus.”
The “emotional celebration” of Monteith’s life was closed to the public, but 20th Century Fox TV (which produces the series) released a statement thanking fans “for their continued outpouring of love and support.”
Glee creator Ryan Murphy recently told TVLine that star (and Monteith’s girlfriend) Lea Michele had been instrumental in planning the memorial gathering.
20th Century Fox TV’s complete statement is below:Today, Ryan Murphy and Lea Michele gathered the cast, crew and producers of Glee, along with colleagues from the network and studio, to share memories and music in an emotional celebration of the life of Cory Monteith. We thank the public for their continued outpouring of love and support as we grieve our friend and colleague during this difficult time.
Actor Dennis Farina has died at the age of 69, according to the Associated Press. A former officer for the Chicago Police Department, Farina was one of Hollywood’s great character actors, playing roles on both sides of the law as both a cop and a gangster. One of his most famous TV roles was that of Law & Order‘s Detective Joe Fontana, from 2004 to 2006.
In more recent years, Farina played Nick’s father on New Girl and Ace’s right-hand man on the HBO series Luck. His other television credits included NBC’s In-Laws, Miami Vice, and NBC’s gritty ’80s series Crime Story. Farina had just been announced as an upcoming guest voice actor on Fox’s Family Guy over this past weekend.
But I’ll remember him for his scene-stealing performances in several incredible movies. Farina was Jimmy Serrano in Midnight Run, Jack Crawford (now played by Laurence Fishburne in Hannibal) in Michael Mann’s super-’80s thriller Manhunter, Karen Sisco’s dad in Steven Soderbergh’s Out of Sight, and Lt. Walter Anderson in Stephen Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan. And just the other day I quoted his “Yeah, don’t go to England” line, from his role as Avi in Guy Ritchie’s Snatch.
You will be missed, Mr. Farina.
Cory Monteith died from a “mixed drug toxicity that involved heroin, primarily, and also alcohol,” according to an initial autopsy report conducted by the British Columbia Coroner’s Office. (Watch the video press release below.)
The Glee star was found dead Saturday in a Vancouver hotel room. He was 31.
Monteith, in a June 2011 interview with Parade magazine, opened up about his drug abuse, which first consumed him as a teen, when he would indulge in “Anything and everything, as much as possible…. I had a serious problem.” After his mother and friends staged an intervention, a 19-year-old Monteith tried rehab — “then went back to doing exactly what I left off doing.”
It was when he found himself stealing from a loved one that Monteith “finally said, ‘I’m gonna start looking at my life and figure out why I’m doing this.’” Yet as recently as this April, he entered rehab again.
It was previously announced by authorities that there were no signs of foul play in the matter of Monteith’s death, and that he had returned to his hotel room alone the night he died.
Glee star Cory Monteith was found dead in a Vancouver hotel room Saturday afternoon. He was 31.
A cause of death was not given and foul play was not suspected.
According to reports, staff at Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel discovered his body after he missed his check-out time.
“We are deeply saddened by this tragic news,” read a statement from Glee producers, Fox and 20th Century Fox Television. “Cory was an exceptional talent and an even more exceptional person. He was a true joy to work with and we will all miss him tremendously. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and loved ones.”
Last March, Monteith entered rehab for substance addiction, forcing Glee to write his character Finn out of Season 4′s final stretch. Upon his release one month later, the actor said to fans, ”Sending out big love to everyone. Thank you for the continued support! It means the world to me!” He made his first public appearance last month when he attended the Chrysalis Butterfly Ball charity gala in Los Angeles with girlfriend and co-star Lea Michele.
Monteith, who had been candid about his struggles with addiction, previously received treatment when he was 19. He told Parade magazine in 2011 that he was “lucky to be alive.”
Monteith’s colleagues and friends took to Twitter early Sunday morning to express their shock and grief.